Produced between 1906 and 1909, this wooden mallet putter is an unmarked Spalding Model R putter. It is modeled after the aluminum Schenectady putter Travis used to win the
1904 British Amateur. Already a three time US amateur champ
before he used won the 1904 British Am, Travis caused quite a stir with his
outstanding putting which eventually led to the R&A banning the
Schenectady putter in 1910.
Center-shafted Schenectady and Schenectady-style putters remained
conforming to the USGA rules, however, and a few US clubmakers took to
producing such clubs, sometimes with wood heads.
For more on the Schenectady putter and Walter Travis putters see TCA2 V1 p225-228 and TCA2 V2 p609-610.
This Model R features a brass face and convex brass soleplate (two separate pieces) along with a rectangular lead backweight. The 34 1/2" shaft is original as is its leather grip. There is a small hairline crack near the base of the hosel but it looks like part of the whipping just above it. The old finish has been cleaned up and the club looks quite nice.
This putter is second from the right in the accompanying group image.